5 Popular Television Genres

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Television as we know it today was invented in 1927 by Philo Taylor Farnsworth. Since then, the number of television genres that someone can choose from has grown immensely. Whether you watch television through directv cincinnati or another platform, are you familiar with these five popular genres? 


Drama television series are plot-driven and depict characters in conflict with themselves or others. A drama might be based on a real person or situation, either current or from the past, or on a fictional character. Dramas are generally regarded as the most-watched genre on television.


Situation comedies, or sitcoms, usually feature groups of people who know each other, such as coworkers, family members, or roommates. Depending on the set where the sitcom is filmed, a sitcom can be multi-camera, which refers to looking at different angles of the same set, or single-camera. Cheers, Friends, and Seinfeld are examples of some notable sitcoms. 

Soap Operas

Soap operas are characterized by romance and melodrama, appealing to emotions. Episodes are usually a long-running series of a continuous storyline, with some series spanning several decades of time on the air. Popular soap operas include As the World Turns and General Hospital. 

Reality Television

Reality TV focuses on relationships between ordinary people, rather than professional actors and actresses portraying a character. There is often a level of competition in this genre, as seen in shows like Big Brother, The Amazing Race and Survivor. The amount of scriptedness in reality TV is a subject of debate.


Often running 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, news programming brings live reports of local, national, and worldwide events. Major news networks in the United States include CBS, NBC and ABC as well as several cable networks. 

No matter where someone’s interests lie, they are sure to find a television genre that they enjoy.